Tech Policy Highlights

Expanding Broadband in the Black Rural South

The Joint Center’s issue brief Expanding Broadband in the Black Rural South highlights the challenges and solutions in expanding broadband in the Black Rural South (Southern rural counties with populations that are 35 percent Black or higher). The four-page issue brief, authored by Joint Center Technology Policy Director Dr. Dominique Harrison, reveals that 38 percent…

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Joint Center Joins R Street Institute Panel on National Data Privacy Law and International Data Security

Joint Center Technology Policy Director Dr. Dominique Harrison joined R Street Institute’s panel entitled “Congress needs to start caring about our privacy as much as China does.” The conversation focused on “the urgency of a national data privacy law and its implications on the United States’ standing in data security internationally.” Other panelists included Google…

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Joint Center President Answers Additional Questions from Members of Congress on Disinformation Online

Joint Center President Spencer Overton provided additional written responses to questions from Members of Congress after his testimony at the Subcommittee on Elections of the Committee on House Administration hearing entitled “Voting Rights and Election Administration: Combating Misinformation in the 2020 Election.” Read Spencer’s full written responses to the follow-up questions (8-pages) here. Read Spencer’s…

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Joint Center President: Senate Tech CEO Hearing is a Play to Discourage Removal of Election Disinformation

Slate just published this commentary on today’s Senate hearing featuring the CEOs of Facebook, Google, and Twitter co-written by Joint Center President Spencer Overton and Professor Danielle Keats Citron. Their bottom line: “The Senate hearing six days before Election Day is an obvious play to chill social-media companies’ efforts to remove election disinformation. The goal is to ensure…

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Joint Center and GW Law Host Debate on Section 230 With Key Experts

The Joint Center partnered with George Washington University School of Law to host a debate entitled Should Congress Amend The Communications Decency Act to Address Discriminatory Ad Targeting by Social Media? Congresswoman Yvette Clarke (D-NY) and Congressman Mike Doyle (D-PA) provided opening remarks. Panelists included Boston University Professor of Law Danielle Keats Citron, Former Wikimedia…

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Joint Center Testifies to Congress on Misinformation in the 2020 Election

On October 6, Joint Center President Spencer Overton provided expert testimony at a congressional hearing entitled “Voting Rights And Election Administration: Combatting Misinformation In The 2020 Election.” In his opening statement, Spencer explained that online disinformation is not simply dividing our nation. Foreign and domestic actors are using lies to specifically target and suppress Black…

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Joint Center to FCC: Don’t Facilitate Online Disinformation & Discrimination

Yesterday, the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies submitted its analysis opposing the Trump Administration’s attempt to prod the Federal Communications Commission to adopt rules that would discourage platforms like Twitter and Facebook from removing objectionable material—like disinformation that suppresses Black votes or facilitates housing or employment discrimination. In May—just two days after Twitter flagged a…

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Joint Center President Testifies at Joint Congressional Hearing on Disinformation Online and Section 230

On June 24, Joint Center President Spencer Overton provided expert testimony at a joint congressional hearing entitled “A Country in Crisis: How Disinformation Online is Dividing the Nation.” During the congressional hearing, Spencer explained that both domestic and foreign actors use disinformation to divide Americans along racial lines, and mentioned a recent Gallup/Knight Foundation survey…

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Joint Center President Publishes Article on Section 230 Entitled ‘State Power to Regulate Social Media Companies to Prevent Voter Suppression’

Joint Center President Spencer Overton published an article, State Power to Regulate Social Media Companies to Prevent Voter Suppression, in the University of California, Davis Law Review. Section 230 of the Federal Communications Act of 1934 generally prevents platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube from being held legally liable for content created by third-party…

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